They claim the crisis affects us all, but did it influence the funding of archaeological excavations, conservation and research? The BBCreports it does, stating the consequences will be felt as far as property development: “The job losses in archaeology could threaten the start of recovery for the building industry as any site with historic significance has to be excavated before development can begin.“
To get an overview of the effect ‘the credit crunch’ has on archaeology, ACE(Archaeology in Contemporary Europe) has opened a webpage dedicated to ‘Archaeology and the Crisis’: “Major changes in the global economy have affected and will continue to affect our lives. Both at face value and as a collective syndrome, the ‘crisis’ clearly impacts on the practice of archaeology, on its practitioners, and ultimately on the knowledge we produce about the past. This webpage proposes to monitor some of these effects, on a country by country basis, on four overlapping themes.“
ACE is gathering – and will supply – information on the effects of the current global crisis on archaeology.You can use an online form to submit information on the impact of the crisis in your country (if needed anonymously).The survey focusses on 4 related areas: research funding and priorities, professional employment and skills, conservation and public outreach and heritage management, policies and legislation.
An example of the questions asked: What are the impacts of the crisis on archaeological documentation and finds, as studied, curated and stored by field units or by museums? Have the budgets dedicated to research (infrastructure or project based, in universities or research bodies) been affected by the crisis, in terms of available funding, evaluation criteria, types of projects selected, eligible expenditures? What impact on the broader publics interest in the past and its values does the crisis have? Which structural, policy and legal modifications follow from or are amplified, accelerated, or on the contrary delayed by various responses to the ‘crisis’ at regional or central government levels?
Got information ‘Archaeology & the current crisis’ to share?Do fill out ACE’s survey.
Via the Flemish Archaeology website archeonet.be.